Wednesday, December 6, 2023

‘Simplification is the state of understanding’: Manish Sharma

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Manish Sharma, CBO, Saarathi, recently joined NewsX for an enriching chat as part of NewsX India A-List. In the exclusive conversation, he spoke to us about his work-life experiences, his company Saarathi and much more. Read excerpts:

Talking about his educational background, Manish said, “ Little over two decades I started from BITS Pilani and started my career with Honda in Delhi. Then I started working for this large biotech company Genentech, the number 1 company in the Fortune hundred best companies to work for at that time. After that, I had the pleasure of working for Apple right before the iPhone was launched. But I always wanted to come back to India, do something meaningful here. So, I came back to head operations for Blackberry, move back to Apple and be in the team that built the very first iPhone. Then it was Microsoft, very humble under the leadership of Satya Nadella and so much to learn from them.”

“I then decided to do something big in India. Right now we are working on a platform that is a digital lending marketplace. I feel like it is going to make a big difference to how India lending is and I am super excited”, he added.

Sharing his experience with working with such prominent organizations, Manish revealed, “I think my experience with Honda was all about quality and that quality comes first. With Genentech, I learned that if you put the customer in the centre, every business strategy is around it. To me, the two things that are always taken to heart are, first one from Apple was simplify. Simplification is the state of understanding. Then with Microsoft, I learned that you can’t win it all alone and having a partnership DNA is what would actually make you succeed in this world.”

Giving us an insight about his company Saarathi, the CBO said, “At Saarathi our vision is to bridge the credit gap in India. We want to focus on the offline channel and transform it digitally. For all lending products, people need assistance or expertise before choosing one. And typically a direct sales agent makes that decision for you. Now, if that agent is not digitally sound, then they are not going to be able to do it effectively and for a lot of people. What we do is, we pull that intelligence that lies with the bank back into the channel so that the channel is intelligent and can reach out to people. And that is how we will bring credit access to a much higher level than now.”

Talking about how he builds trust among people when his business involves credit, Manish exclaimed, “To me insights and bringing actual data closer to the person instead of verbal advice makes the trust much higher. What we are enabling through digital means is that we provide complete transparency of information. And when that happens, the trust automatically comes in.”

Sharing his mantra for a better future, Manish said, “Everything revolves around creating a great team. Respecting talent and loving people is also important here.”

Watch the full interview on NewsX YouTube page:

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